Things Fall Apart Essay

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Chinua Achebe’s novel Things Fall Apart is an excellent piece of literary work that addresses the history of post-colonialism in Africa. The writer intentionally situates a colonized people as the cultural norm while portraying the colonizing people as outsiders, or as “the other”. Achebe’s work is meant to correct people’s misconception that African culture and society is savage and primitive by narrating the story of the colonialization of the Igbo people from an African point of view. The novel depicts the tensions and conflicts within the Igbo society as well as being under colonial rule. The justice system of the Igbo people impacts the lives of everyone within the community. They have complex social institutions that delivers…show more content…
As a result, he abides by the law and decides not only to participate in the deed, but is also the one that takes Ikemefuna’s life. As Ikemefuna is yelling out, “My father, they have killed me!” (p.61), Okonkwo feels immense guilt but performs the deed of killing off the child that called him “Father”, simply because the justice of his society claimed it. When his son Nwoye finds out about Okonkwo’s involvement in the killing of Ikemefuna, he stops speaking to his father altogether and distances himself from him. In this case, the justice system that required Okonkwo to follow the rules in order to secure his reputation, ended up in him having to lose two sons; one being killed by the hands of the very person he considered his father, and one that lost all respect for him when he decided to ignore morals and choose justice instead. Okonkwo’s sense of ethics is what shapes the plot in Things Fall Apart. His beliefs in how he carries himself and who he strives to be is mainly influenced by the failures of his father. He does not want to seem weak and pathetic in front of the society that once labeled his father as such. His violent and ambitious behavior is the outcome. Achebe writes, “Perhaps down in his heart Okonkwo was not a cruel man. But his whole life was dominated by fear, the fear of failure and of weakness. It was deeper and more intimate than the fear of evil and capricious gods and of

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